When Abuse Leads to Cynicism

Watchtheshepherd

by Virginia Knowles cross posted from her blog Watch The ShepherdDo you know anyone whose faith has been turned upside down into cynicism because of hypocrisy or abuse within a church or a family?I do. I've lost count of those I know personally, and I have read about far more who have walked away from the Christian faith or at least wandered to the outer fringe of fellowshipI have been researching abuse and authority issues in families, churches, and religious movements for over seven years. … [Read more...]

“No Church is Perfect”

Image from Living Liminal

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalDear well-meaning (if cliched) christians I meet online,If just one more of you says to me, "no church is perfect" as a way of dismissing the abuse I experienced, I will probably self-destruct in front of you.I know this is true.But I do not accept it as an excuse for abusive behaviour. I do not accept it as a cover-up for harming others.You see, I am married.To an imperfect person.But that doesn't give my husband the right to abuse me.I understand that he is not perfect. I also understand that I am not perfect. But we have each other's backs. We talk things through. We forgive. We overlook the shortcomings. We value each other, … [Read more...]

Who Has the Power in Your [Former] Church?

Ellen

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsI know a man who once worked for a major Christian Publisher. He had gone to their school to train as a missionary, but when it was almost time for he and his wife to leave for the mission field, the leadership requested that he stay and teach in the school. … [Read more...]

If It Was So Bad, Why Did You Stay?

Image from When Church  Hurts

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsOnce in a while, I get this question. It’s not so different from years ago when I asked my mother the same thing.My father died of colon cancer when I was three years old. My mother rarely spoke of him except to say that his death was the best thing that could have happened to us – his four children. Back in those days, you didn’t challenge or question adults, so I would listen to her comment and wonder what she meant. Was it because he was so ill or so maimed by his disease (he lost most of his intestines and wore a colostomy bag) that it would have been difficult for us? That was my assumption.Then, when I was about twenty yea … [Read more...]

Day 20 of 21 Days of Healing: What About God?

Image from When Church  Hurts

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church Hurts“God made you in His image.”Day 20You may have noticed that I haven’t spent much time on God over these 21 days except for the brain changing thoughts that I hope you have been repeating to yourself several times a day through the month. If you stuck with it, you will probably notice a change in how you think about what God thinks of you. Please don’t stop once our 21 Days are over. … [Read more...]

Part 2 – The Paradox of Freedom

Image from Living Liminal

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalPart one can be found here - Part 1 - The Paradox of FreedomI shared in my last post about the revolutionary discovery I made after my husband left me - that I actually had the freedom to choose whether or not to forgive him! And that it was only when I found out I was free to choose, that I was truly able to forgive. This is what I call the paradox of freedom.Now it's been many years since that momentous realisation. Since then I've seen a precious friendship turn into marriage, been blessed with two more amazing sons, suffered spiritual abuse, lost my 'religion', and embarked on a faith journey with a freshly-revealed … [Read more...]

Not Quoting Quiverfull: The Blame Game Rules

Image NLQ original

Found on a recovery group on Facebook.Original authorship unknown. Edited for clarity and spelling.  Worth sharing here since it's about the rules in spiritually abusive churches. What would you add to this list? … [Read more...]

It Was a Friday

Ellen

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsOne year ago. It was a Friday. Last year it was the last day of school before we were to go on Christmas break. This year, while today is a Friday, we will have school for two days next week. So, it’s not quite the same. Yet today is much like that Friday one year ago.On that day, my husband was trying to set up a meeting with church leadership to discuss the spiritually abusive treatment I had received for over a decade and the leadership’s angry response when they found out that I had broken their mandate to keep quiet about what they had done to me all of those years. … [Read more...]

Day 18 of 21 Days of Healing: Focus

Image NLQ

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church Hurts“I have loved you with an everlasting love.” (Can you tell your thoughts are changing?)Day 18:For those who are following the 21 Days of Healing, you have read and hopefully thought through Days 13, 14 and 15 – which are about letting go of all of the stuff you used to do and then thinking about – and doing – the things that you truly want to do. … [Read more...]

Day 17 of 21 Days of Healing: How To Respond

21Daysofhealing

by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church HurtsHis mercies are new every morning.  (Brain work.)Day 17A few days a go I attended a conference for teachers in my discipline – music. Of course, the first person I ran into is a life-long member of the church that tossed me out last December. In fact, because she divorced several years ago, she no longer serves in any capacity. (He had an affair and refused church or any other kind of counseling. The wife did everything she could to save their marriage. But I digress.) “I haven’t seen you in a long time!” she exclaimed. And because she was with another woman whom I did not know, I simply replied, “Oh, like all of us, I’ve been v … [Read more...]


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